Portman, Brown announce $35 million for mental health in Ohio


In the Nov. 6, 2020, file photo, shades of red and blue light of dawn fills the sky behind Capitol Hill in Washington. According to a new poll by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research, about half of Americans say the Senate should vote to convict former President Donald Trump at the end of his impeachment trial. And a majority think he bears at least some blame for the Capitol insurrection on Jan. 6. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

WASHINGTON (WDTN) – U.S. Senators Rob Portman (R-OH) and Sherrod Brown (D-OH) said Friday the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has awarded $32.4 million in Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinics (CCBHC-COVID) Expansion grants across Ohio.

Ohio’s State Department of Mental Health and Addiction services also received $2.9 million to provide crisis intervention services, mental and substance use disorder treatment, and other related recovery supports for children and adults impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The funding expansion comes as part of a government funding measure Congress passed in December 2020.

“The social isolation and increased anxiety caused by the COVID-19 pandemic has only exacerbated many of the issues Ohioans face that can negatively impact mental health and substance use disorders,” said Portman. “I’m pleased that HHS has awarded more than $35 million in Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinics Expansion grants across Ohio thanks to the bipartisan COVID-19 relief package Congress enacted in December, which was based on the framework I helped negotiate. This funding will help vulnerable individuals across Ohio gain access to the resources and care they need.”

“The COVID-19 pandemic has made it harder than ever for Ohioans with mental health and substance use disorders to get the care that they need,” said Brown. “This much needed investment will expand access to outpatient mental health services, crisis intervention services and substance use disorder treatment services that so many Ohioans rely on, alleviating the pressure faced by our health care system, which has been overwhelmed with COVID-19 cases.”

According to a release from the Senators, this investment is a part of HHS’s Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) response grants, which Portman and Brown fought for. The grant program works to expand CCBHCs, which are designed to provide a comprehensive range of mental health and substance use disorder services to vulnerable individuals. CCBHCs are responsible for providing nine types of services, with an emphasis on the provision of 24-hour crisis care, utilization of evidence-based practices, care coordination and integration with physical health care. Learn more about the CCBHC Success Center, here.  

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